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Age 3 through 8th grade


  • Middle School
  • Teaching and Learning
Summer service trip to Costa Rica provides students with new adventures, treasured memories
Anna Casarino and Gabrielle Zaher

This blog is Part 2 of 2 about Independence's service trip to Costa Rica in June 2018.

Independence recently organized a service trip to Costa Rica. In mid-June, we traveled all across the country, going to the Pacific Coast, zip-lining, visiting hot springs and waterfalls, and, of course, participating in service activities.

The service included a half-day of shoveling natural fertilizer for organic coffee farmers and adding onto a sidewalk for school children. It was a lot more fun than it sounds! The people we did the service with were super nice and welcoming. They cooked us delicious food and invited us to a thrilling adventure park. We climbed in a hollow tree, zip-lined, and walked across a monkey bridge!

Our tour guide, Aura, also planned a river boat tour for us at sunset; we saw Costa Rican birds, crocodiles, and interesting plants. The beach was especially exciting given that we had never been to the Pacific Ocean, and everyone enjoyed the walk through the national park, where we saw monkeys, sloths, and frogs.

Visiting a Costa Rican elementary school was another favorite memory from the trip. Playing with the kids at recess was great, and we were able to practice our Spanish and come up with creative ways around the language barrier. Everywhere we traveled, we were offered new varieties of homemade Costa Rican food from the owners of the hotels. We never knew what delicious food we had been missing out on!

Each day turned out to be a new adventure that will forever be treasured as fond memories. The Costa Rican service trip ended up being the highlight of our summer, and both of us would jump at the chance to go again because it was absolutely fantastic!

Anna Casarino and Gabrielle Zaher are graduates of Independence's Class of 2018.

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